Monday, December 06, 2010

12 Traits of a Pharisee

This Sunday I preached on Matthew 23, a blistering passage that is Jesus's most significant and thorough treatment of the hypocrisy of the Pharisees. The 39 verses include the famous "Seven Woes" of Jesus as he blasts them for their religious shell-game.

I invited our church to a time of self-evaluation in considering the following characteristics.

12 Traits of a Pharisee:

1. They do not practice what they preach (v 3)
2. The give themselves exceptions (v 4)
3. They are focused on appearances (v 5)
4. They love to be respected (vv 6-7)
5. They hind people spiritually (v 13)
6. They are dangerously persuasive (v 15)
7. They are spiritually unbalanced (vv 16-22)
8. They are busy in the wrong things (vv 23-24)
9. They are not focused on the heart (vv 25-28)
10. They are over-confident (vv 29-32)
11. They are under judgment (vv 33-36)
12. They grieve the heart of Jesus (vv 37-38)

Here's the concluding paragraph: "Be watchful - be very, very, watchful - of your heart because the murder of the Son of God came at the hands of religious people who had convinced themselves that they were doing God's will."